Giving Compass' Take:
- Here are four lessons from Eunice Kennedy Shriver on how she implemented her innovative ideas and the barriers she ran into along the way.
- How can donors help social innovators combat similar barriers?
- Learn about a collaborative approach to social innovation.
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The difference between creativity and innovation is execution. While creativity is generating valuable and novel ideas, innovation is about successfully implementing those ideas, turning concepts into fully workable solutions. But while innovation models reinforce that distinction by using labels like “execution,” “implementation,” “launch” or “scaling up” to designate the final phase of the value-creation process, such terms can misrepresent the challenge. They suggest that once you have a superior offering, the rest is just about effort and that the time for creative thinking and originality is past.
However, the biggest surprise for innovators is often the internal opposition from within their own organization. Great solutions get quashed when they clash with the core paradigms and beliefs that are already in place, or when they don’t fit the prevailing business model. Unconventional thinking is needed to design new business models, to engage supporters, partners, and other stakeholders in novel ways, and to negotiate the forces of resistance or apathy conspiring against you.
That ingenuity is well illustrated by the innovation journey of Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the younger sister of John F. Kennedy. Born 100 years ago in July, she pioneered the Special Olympics and changed attitudes toward people with intellectual disabilities. Shriver’s trailblazing inclusivity efforts, captured in a recent biography, contravene some widely held implementation principles. Her story exposes four contemporary innovation fallacies that any disruptive innovator must overcome as he or she tries to bridge the gap from creativity to successful innovation.
Read the full article about myths of implementing innovative social ideas by Cyril Bouquet, Jean-Louis Barsoux & Michael Wade at Stanford Social Innovation Review.